• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2013 - SHIPs

The summer visit to Caltech is 3-4 days long and is the only time during the year of work when all the participants on the team come together in person to work intensively on the data. Generally, each educator may bring up to two students to the summer visit that are paid for by NITARP, and they may raise funds to bring two more. The teams work at Caltech; the summer visit typically includes a half-day tour of JPL, which is a favorite site for group photos. Reload to see a different set of quotes.

The SHIPs team came to visit in June 2013. The core team educators attended, plus 9 students.


  • [student:] The most interesting thing I did saw and learned during the trip to Caltech was the process of actual research. In school all projects and work has already been done. However, while doing research at Caltech, we were researching new information that hasn't been touched on before. The researchers and presenters provided great information on the research at hand and also on how to conduct the real scientific research.
  • [student:] It is an incredible feeling to be performing revolutionary science and developing new found conclusions, over the traditional student experience of replicating experiments performed by Galileo or Newton. This experience will continue to benefit not only my vocational aspirations, but scientists to come.
  • [student:] Before this trip I thought that everyone in this field had similar jobs, and they were all related to research. Now I've realized that there are so many different jobs that go into NASA. Learning the computer and research aspects of astronomy while seeing the engineering and construction aspects at JPL really opened my eyes to all the different job opportunities in this field.
  • Because we are learning programming, it will take more time to write script to do the analysis but it will be easier to change that script and apply it to different situations once it is written. Programming is also an invaluable tool that we can only pass on to our students if we are confident using it in complex situations ourselves. [...]It is already becoming apparent that coding is going to make our ability to look at and compare many sources manageable.
  • [student:] It wasn't necessarily as surprising as it was relieving to find out that everyone was generally in the same boat as far as knowledge went. I was a bit nervous to go on the trip because Python and photometry were very new to me. But after discovering that it was new to everyone, it became a collaborative effort that I really enjoyed, and it never seemed like a competition.

Summer Visit - 2013 - SHIPs